Lycée Corneille Virtual Visit

Secondary Level: Lycée (ages 15-18, Seconde-Terminale)

The Section Internationale programme provides a bilingual, bi-cultural education oriented towards the international option of the International French Baccalauréat (BFI – Bac Français International) at the end of Terminale. The programme references the British National Curriculum and is aligned with the French curriculum. Students sit the IGCSE English Literature exam at the end of Seconde and the BFI at the end of Terminale.

The English Language & Literature and History-Geography programmes foster intellectual development and cultural enrichment while developing in-depth knowledge of the literary and historical heritage of Britain and North America. The pedagogical approach is based on these educational systems, and the teaching team are native English speakers who have been trained in their home countries. The programmes are comparable to the linguistic and cultural level of the French programmes or the equivalent year programmes in the UK or US.

The students are fully integrated into the French public school system at Lycée Corneille. In addition to the standard French curriculum, students have six hours a week of English Language and Literature and History-Geography in Seconde. As students prepare the BFI in Première and Terminale, the number of hours a week increases to eight. Participation in the International Section is challenging and rewarding, requiring extra academic investment and personal motivation.


English Literature

The students follow the Cambridge IGCSE English Literature course, which involves study of a novel, a play and poetry. Different genres and time periods are represented in the literature studied, for example, Macbeth, Mansfield ParkAn Inspector Calls and Spies, as well as poems from Songs of Ourselves, the Cambridge Examination Board anthology. The students focus on literary essay writing skills in preparation for the BFI course which starts in Première.


In the History programme, students study the history of Europeans in the context of world history from Antiquity to the middle of the 19th century. Students are taught how to effectively analyze primary and secondary sources as they investigate historical content and formulate their understanding and interpretation of historical events. To accomplish this task, students are asked to apply their knowledge and understanding by participating in classroom discussions, activities, research projects and essays, completing a variety of assignments.

In Geography, students learn about societies and sustainable development. From this knowledge, students conduct case studies in order to compare and contrast the effects of such natural disasters in the immediate, short and long term in regard to economic, human, social and environmental factors.

Première and Terminale

The BFI (International Option of the Baccalauréat)

In Première and Terminale, students prepare the British version of the BFI, an integrated Franco-British school-leaving certificate. It combines the breadth and rigour of the French baccalaureat with the extra subjects of English and History-Geography taught and examined in English to British A-level standard. It is jointly certified by the University of Cambridge International Examinations and the French Ministry of Education.

The BFI makes academic and linguistic demands to an equal level in English and French, providing students with a bicultural as well as a bilingual education. Students develop a capacity for hard work and an intellectual and cultural flexibility that give them the potential to become excellent undergraduates in Britain, the US, Canada, France and elsewhere.

Teaching Hours

In addition to the course load of the Baccalauréat Général, students have two hours of BFI History and two hours of BFI Geography. English LVA (Langue Vivante A) is replaced with four hours of BFI English Language & Literature.

The Exams

At the end of Terminale, students sit written and oral exams in both English Language & Literature and History-Geography.

The BFI is now distinguished from the standard Baccalauréat Général in two important ways: firstly, it is established as the equivalent of four UK A Levels (as opposed to three UK A Levels for the standard Baccalauréat Général); and secondly, it makes clear that linguistic performance is assessed following expectations of first language usage of academic English, with an expected level of C1 and above.

The BFI accounts for approximately 25% of the final Bac results.

For further details and a good overview of the BFI (in French), please click here.

About Teachers

Michele May

Collège-Lycée Teacher & Head of Section

Mrs. May has wide-ranging experience in international education and management in secondary and higher-education institutions in both France and the United States. She has worked in the French system of international education since 2004 and is dedicated to developing this unique inter-cultural dynamic.

Collège & Lycée Teacher

Teaches English Language Literature at the collège and lycée levels. Mrs Bennett has taught in an international school in Paris before joining the Section Internationale team. She has a good knowledge of the Cambridge International curriculum.

Collège & Lycée Teacher

Teaches History and Geography at the collège and lycée levels, including BFI in History and Geography. M. Hynes has an extensive teaching experience in various international schools in Paris area.

Collège & Lycée Teacher

Teaches English Language Literature at the collège and lycée levels. He hails from Philadelphia, where he later recieved his BA in English & Science Education (cum laude) from Temple University. Before arriving in France, he taught in the United States as well as abroad in Mongolia, with the Peace Corps and several international schools.

Collège & Lycée Teacher

Teaches English Literature and Language at the collège and lycée levels and OIB Geography, as well as being the Cambridge IGCSE exam coordinator. She has a BA (Hons) in Geography and English literature from the University of London and a Postgraduate Certificate in Education from the University of Sunderland.